When modern high efficiency boilers heat your home water vapour is created and a condensate pipe is needed to help drain the liquid away from the boiler. Condensate pipes can be situated either internally or externally but, if it is the latter, then it stands a far higher chance of freezing when the weather turns cold.
It is important to defrost a condensate pipe – or, better yet, prevent if from becoming frozen – so that your boiler continues to perform, and you are not faced with costly damage. And the good news is that a range of simple solutions are available.
Preventative measures include retro-fitting pipe insulation or installing an accessory such as the Alpha E-Tec Trace Heating Kit which enables the boiler to work in conjunction with an electric trace wire and outside weather probe to protect external condensate pipes during freezing temperatures.
In the unfortunate event your condensate pipe has frozen it is relatively straightforward to rectify the problem yourself by thawing the frozen blockage with warm water. Take a look at our handy frozen condensate pipes guide for more help.
What does the boiler condensate pipe do and what do I need to know about boiler condensate pipe regulations?